Reducing Barriers

Joyner Library’s alternative textbook program benefits faculty and students

May 2, 2016

By Kelly Rogers Dilda
University Communication

An alternative textbook program launched by J.Y. Joyner Library this year has the potential to save East Carolina University students hundreds of dollars each semester, and faculty members are eager to propose cost-saving solutions.

The program encourages faculty to explore alternative texts such as Open Access textbooks, freely-available articles and books, or library-licensed resources in lieu of assigning traditional textbooks.

Joyner Library Director Janice S. Lewis said faculty members across the university recognize that the high cost of textbooks is a barrier to student success and they wanted to do something about it.

“I think we have a responsibility to first-generation and low-income college students to reduce barriers to getting the knowledge needed to succeed,” said Dr. Joseph G.L. Lee, assistant professor in the Department of Health Education and Promotion.

The average cost of books and supplies for ECU undergraduate students is $1,260 per year. That mirrors the average costs nationwide, according to the Digest of Education Statistics.

Students shared with Lewis that they simply did not purchase course materials because of the cost, particularly for courses outside their major. Instead, they shared a book with a classmate or relied on their class notes and materials their instructor shared via PowerPoints or through Blackboard.

Only select faculty are able to participate at this time, but the response for proposals was so positive that Lewis said they’ll expand the program from 10 to 15 faculty when it begins this fall. Proposals included adopting existing open textbooks, incorporating library subscription resources such as journal articles, e-book chapters and streaming video in courses, and creating completely new content.

In many cases, faculty are also frustrated by the inability to find a textbook that adequately covers the subject matter they are teaching, and they are excited about the possibility of customizing content.

“I am interested in this program to enable more students to afford to attend college by reducing cost,” said Dr. Christyn Dolbier, associate professor in the Department of Psychology. “The program addresses issues I have with the traditional textbooks I’ve used and reduces reliance on publisher-provided learning activities. It will also allow me to pursue my scholarly interest in investigating ways to enhance student learning.”

Several proposals touted other advantages of alternative textbooks such as engaging students in active learning and ensuring that every student has access to course materials on the first day of class.

Margaret Blythe, a junior in the Department of Sociology, said she thinks students will benefit from the program.

“I particularly love using e-books because of their easy access,” she said. “They allow you to highlight important things and then later track and compile them for notes.”

“The fact that alternative textbooks also help students cut down on spending is fantastic,” she added.

“I am convinced that in many instances, alternative textbooks can provide higher quality content that is more timely and relevant for students than the texts currently being used,” said Lewis. “Through the program, Joyner Library can support faculty in their efforts to improve course materials and can help save students money on textbooks at the same time.”

Faculty in the program receive a $1000 stipend to compensate for additional time spent developing new course materials and assignments.  They will also be paired with a librarian who will assist with identifying potential course materials and offer copyright guidance.

Current recipients are from the Thomas Harriot College of Arts & Sciences, the College of Business, the College of Education, the College of Engineering and Technology, the College of Fine Arts and Communication, and the College of Health and Human Performance.

The alternative textbook program is funded by library donors and income from the Fred Timms Langford and Verona Lee Joyner Langford Endowment Fund.

For more information, contact the Joyner Library scholarly communication department at scholarlycomm@ecu.edu or 252-328-2261.

IMAGE: Student Margaret Blythe, a junior in the Department of Sociology, likes the easy, online access of alternative textbooks and the cost savings associated with the program.

Visitor One Million Celebration!

 

For the first time ever, the gate count for the Joyner Library building will exceed ONE MILLION visitors during a fiscal year. We will celebrate this landmark on Wednesday, June 29, at 2:00 pm with popcorn, ice cream and general merriment. Please come be part of the celebration and meet our symbolic VISITOR NUMBER ONE MILLION, whose identity will not be determined until he or she walks through the door!

Wednesday, June 29th
2pm

Joyner Library e-newsletter

Take a peek at our Special Edition of Joyner Library’s e-newsletter celebrating National Library Week! This issue covers topics such as our Alternative Textbook Program, the Joyner Library Student Advisory Board, recent grant awards here at the library, our 3D Printing service, and much more.

View Our Newsletter

 April-2016-Newsletter

View Our Newsletter

The theme for National Library Week, “Libraries Transform,” is designed to increase public awareness of the value, impact and services provided by libraries.

As always, if we can be of assistance with your classes or research, please let us know!

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Faculty Loan Periods

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Book Loan Period Change at Joyner Library and the Music Library    

Starting on April 6, 2016, the faculty, staff, and retiree loan periods from Joyner Library and the Music Library for general collection books, music scores, and federal documents will be changed to 180 days with three possible unseen renewals. The due dates for materials will be presented to you on a paper receipt when checking out and emailed to you as part of the checkout process. You will be able to see your due dates at any time in the library’s catalog My Account feature. As a due date approaches, the library will email you a reminder. Renewal requests will continue to be available through the My Account feature, by phone to 252-328-6690, and by email to circulation@ecu.edu. After three renewals, items will need to be brought into the library. Unless there are holds on the items from other patrons, you will be able to check-out the items again.

The decision to change to a 180 day loan period was made in consultation with ECU’s Compliance Management office and as a result of a review of loan periods at the rest of the UNC system libraries and other university libraries. The prior due date of the end of the spring semester was deemed to be too long of a period for appropriate inventory management, especially if an item were renewed yearly for a total of three additional years. The concern about inventory management results from the libraries having had numerous faculty, staff, and retirees lose materials during their long loan periods and others who have left the employment of ECU during the loan period without returning the materials. Such issues resulted in intensive debt collection efforts as required by state law and the inability to collect on some of this debt. It is hoped that the change in the loan period will reduce these negative experiences and protect the libraries’ investments in collections. The Faculty Senate Libraries Committee was consulted about this change at its meeting on January 20, 2016, and expressed its understanding for the need to change the loan period. 

For full details on Joyner Library’s circulation procedures, please consult our Circulation Procedure at http://www.ecu.edu/cs-lib/services/circulation.cfm.

Please note that this change at Joyner Library and the Music Library does not change the current 90 day loan period for faculty and staff at ECU’s Laupus Health Sciences Library.

 

Pet Therapy

Join us during exams for a snack break and pet therapy!

Wednesday, April 27th     12:00pm-1:00pm
Thursday, April 28th     1:00pm-2:00pm
Monday, May 2nd     5:00pm-6:00pm

Circulation Reading Room – 1st Floor of Joyner

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Twelfth Annual Paraprofessional Conference

The SPA Assembly of Joyner Library is pleased to announce the 12th Paraprofessional Conference at ECU will be held on Friday, May 13, 2016. This event allows library paraprofessionals from any field the opportunity to attend presentations, discussions, and workshops on a variety of topics that will allow them to bring positive change and growth to their home institutions. Individuals representing school, public, and academic libraries will be present to share their knowledge and talent with those in attendance. This year’s theme is Digital Humanities and the Library Community.

This year’s keynote will be provided by Arianne Hartsell-Gundy, Head of Humanities Section and Librarian for Literature and Theater Studies at Duke University.https://library.duke.edu/about/directory/staff/7449

This year’s theme is Digital Humanities and the Library Community. The digitization of texts and images has resulted in a proliferation of new scholarship and scholarly approaches to the humanities and, subsequently, libraries have been afforded an array of new opportunities and challenges. Such questions, from among many, to consider are: What is digital scholarship and how does is manifest in library collections and discovery? What roles can libraries, specifically library paraprofessional, play in digital humanities and how might it differ from the library’s relationship to traditional scholarship? How may workflows and staff responsibilities change? What has been done in the area of digital humanities already and what can uninitiated libraries learn?

We look forward to seeing you there!

For more information please contact:
David Wilbourne (wilbournej@ecu.edu or 252-328-4030).

Sponsored by The SPA Assembly of Joyner Library and The Friends of Joyner Library

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Parking Notice

Due to a major construction project around Joyner Library, conference attendees are asked to park in the Minges Coliseum lot and use the shuttle service which will be provided from 7:45-8:45am, 12:30-1:30pm, and 4-5pm. Please see the Directions for more information.